Province Announces Plans for H1N1 Vaccine

H1N1 Flu VirusThe province will begin distributing the H1N1 vaccine to Manitobans beginning the week of October 26.

The vaccine was approved for rollout across Canada earlier today. Federal Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq urged all Canadians to get the shot once it becomes available.

Made by GlaxoSmithKline Plc, Canada has ordered 50.4 million doses from the company. 2 million have already been sent out to all provinces, but it cannot be administered until regulatory approval is given.

Any Canadian wishing to get the vaccine will get it, but the first round of shots will go to people classified under the priority list below.

Manitobans who should get the H1N1 flu shot first include:

  • children aged six months to under five years old;
  • anyone of Aboriginal ancestry (First Nations, Métis or Inuit);
  • disadvantaged individuals (for example, the homeless);
  • people living in remote or isolated areas;
  • people under 65 with a chronic medical condition or other risks including severe obesity, substance abuse or alcoholism;
  • anyone with a weakened immune system or those who live with or care for them;
  • those who live with or care for infants under six months old;
  • single parents or anyone solely responsible for a dependent;
  • health-care workers and medical first responders; and
  • pregnant women

Clinics will be set up and arranged by regional health authorities. Locations and times have yet to be confirmed.

Manitoba expects to have 134,000 vaccine doses the week of October 26 and subsequent deliveries of vaccine will continue weekly.